‘It's About You' is the message Western Bay of Plenty District Council wants to share with residents when starting conversations about the upcoming Long Term Plan 2018-28.
From this week, council is hosting a number of events and holding stalls at market days to meet with residents and learn about what matters to them now and in the coming ten years.
Mayor Garry Webber says the work council does is aimed at meeting the goals and aspirations of the people who live here, and community conversations are a tool to help clarify what these are.
“The Long Term Plan sets the budget and dictates what projects council will focus on for the next ten years – we want to be sure we're investing in the right things at the right time. We'll only know this by listening to people and learning about what they love about living here and how they'd like to see the district progress.”
In March and April council had meetings with community groups about potential LTP conversation topics. These will be the focus of the relaxed, informal events being held through May to July.
The first event takes place this weekend, from 10am-2pm on Saturday May 6, at the Omokoroa Boat Club.
Garry says this is the first of three LTP engagement phases.
“The idea behind this initial phase is to listen to our residents about the things they are concerned or passionate about. We'll use this information to inform a second, check-in phase later this year where we ask people to confirm we're headed in the right direction.
“The third step is putting a draft long term plan together, giving our residents options on what they want us to achieve while showing the effect this will have on rates, and then consulting on this final step from March next year. It's a complex process, but it's important and we want to get it right – starting with the community conversations.
“We're coming to a hall or reserve near you soon and we hope as many people as possible will take advantage of this opportunity.”
To follow the Long Term Plan process, share your Western Bay story, and sign up to receive updates visit www.itsaboutyou.co.nz.
Omokoroa Saturday, May 6 from 10am-2pm at the Omokoroa Boat Club
Kaimai Thursday, May 18 from 3pm-7pm at Kaimai School and Community Hall
Te Puna Saturday, May 27 from 11am-3pm at Te Puna School
Waihi Beach Saturday, June 3 from 11am-3pm at Waihi Beach United Church
Katikati Saturday, June 24 from 11am-3pm at St Paul's Presbyterian Church
Paengaroa Tuesday, July 4 from 7pm-9pm at Paengaroa Community Hall
Drop-in/market day conversations:
Oropi Friday, May 12 from 5.30pm-7.30pm at Oropi Memorial Hall Happy Hour Event
Te Puke Saturday, May 20 from 9am-1pm at Jubilee Park (alongside Te Puke Skatepark opening)
Maketu Sunday, May 21 from 8am-12pm at Village Green Markets
Drop-in sessions before Community Committee Meetings
Omokoroa Tuesday, June 6 from 4.30pm-6.30pm at Omokoroa Community Church
Katikati Wednesday, June 7 from 4.30pm-6.30pm at Katikati Library and Service Centre
Waihi Beach Monday, June 12 from 4pm-6pm at Waihi Beach Community Centre
Maketu Tuesday, June 13 from 4.30pm-6.30pm at Maketu Community Centre
Te Puke Thursday, June 15 from 4.30pm-6.30pm at Te Puke Library and Service Centre
For those who can't be there, there are other ways to have a say:
• Go to www.itsaboutyou.co.nz to have your say online
Join Connect: People's Panel – our online com